Pluralistic: California to smash prison e-profiteers (08 May 2023)

Today’s links California to smash prison e-profiteers: The Public Utility Commission to the rescue! Hey look at this: Delights to delectate. This day in history: 2003, 2008, 2013, 2018, 2022 Colophon: Recent publications, upcoming/recent appearances, current writing projects, current reading California to smash prison e-profiteers (permalink) It’s a double-whammy that defines 21st century American life: a corporation gets caught doing something terrible, exploitative or even murderous, and a government agency steps in – only to discover that there’s nothing it can do, because Reagan/Trump/Clinton/Bush I/Bush II deregulated that industry and stripped the agency of enforcement powers. If you’d like an essay-formatted version of this post to read or share, here’s a link to it on, my surveillance-free, ad-free, tracker-free blog: Man, that feels awful. The idea that extremists gutted our democratically accountable institutions so that there’s nothing they can do, no matter how egregious a corporation’s conduct is so demoralizing. Makes me feel like giving up. But the law is a complex and mysterious thing. Regulators aren’t actually helpless. There are authorities, powers and systems that the corporate wreckers passed over, failed to notice, or failed to neuter. Take Section 5 of the FTC Act, which gives the Commission broad powers to prevent “unfair and deceptive” practices. Since the 1970s, the FTC just acted like this didn’t exist, even though it was right there all along, between Section 4 and Section 6. Then, under the directorship of FTC chair Lina Khan, Section 5 was rediscovered and mobilized, first…Pluralistic: California to smash prison e-profiteers (08 May 2023)

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